Cinder Chapter 26 Summary
by Marissa Meyer

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Chapter 26 Summary

After leaving Dr. Erland’s office, Prince Kai attends a video conference with representatives from all the countries of Earth. Since World War IV, the people of Earth have consolidated themselves into just six countries. These countries are peaceful allies—but now they face the threat of war with Luna.

The other leaders of Earth are not surprised that Queen Levana wants to marry; everyone knows that Levana wants an alliance with a royal family from Earth. Only the Eastern Commonwealth and the UK have monarchies, and Kai is the only unmarried male who currently has direct control of his country’s throne. This makes him Queen Levana’s only viable option.

At the beginning of the video conference, Kai’s allies assume that he will accept the queen’s marriage proposal. Everyone reacts with surprise when they learn that Prince Kai wants to refuse. They discuss other possibilities, but they all know that there is little hope of peace until Queen Levana gets what she wants. Not only is she extremely power-hungry; she needs a royal husband to help her produce an heir. The people of Luna hold a strong superstitious belief that their rulers must have royal blood.

The queen of the UK wonders aloud if Queen Levana will use mind control to force Kai into marriage. This question scares Kai, but Torin says that Queen Levana is unlikely to do such a thing. She can only control a person’s mind if she is in the same room with him; it would be too inconvenient for her to have to remain by Kai’s side at every moment.

During the video conference, the leaders speculate about what will happen if Queen Levana does not get what she wants. Unfortunately, the prospects look grim. The President of America shows a series of satellite photos of what appear to be mutant soldiers engaging in training exercises on the Lunar surface. None of the leaders had any idea that these soldiers existed before now, but all agree that the army must have taken years to develop.

When the world leaders start to panic, Torin urges them to be cautious. He points out that nobody has any proof that the mutants are soldiers. For all anyone knows, they could be laborers. But Prince Kai does not buy this argument. He says that there is only one reason why Queen Levana would pose these marching mutants beneath satellite cameras now, after keeping them a secret for years. She wants to intimidate the Earthens—especially Kai.